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Supply Chain Act Initiative

The Supply Chain Act Initiative is a broad alliance of 17 civil society organisations and their numerous supporters, advocating for a world where businesses respect human rights and avoid environmental degradation – including abroad. Shocking reports of burning factories, exploitative child labour, and the destruction of rain forests constantly demonstrate: companies fail to voluntarily live up to their responsibilities. Therefore we are calling for a supply chain act! Businesses causing or deliberately risking damage to people and the environment in their supply chains must be liable. Unscrupulous business practices must no longer be profitable.

Sign our petition to the German Chancellor now and join us in our call for a supply chain act that protects people and the environment!

Sign now

Reasons for a supply chain act:

Protection for human rights and the environment!

Inadequate fire protection in a Pakistani factory supplying KiK lead to the agonizing end of 258 lives. A bursting dam near a Brazilian iron ore mine caused the death of 270 people, rivers were polluted, and locals no longer had clean drinking water – even though the TÜV Süd (Technical Inspection Association South: German businesses that provide inspection and product certification services) had certified the safety of the dam for the Brazilian government only a few months earlier. In South Africa 34 workers on strike were fatally shot in front of a platinum mine, and BASF is happy to continue trading with the mine's operator. Businesses continue to violate basic human rights and damage the environment in their international activities. Therefore the Supply Chain Act Initiative is calling for a law on human rights due diligence obligations for companies.

Those who cause damage must take responsibility!

German businesses benefit from the economic advantages of a global market. But they tend to disregard the protection of human life and the environment. This doesn't come as a surprise since they need not fear any consequences for damage occurring within their international business. The Supply Chain Act Initiative demands that violations of human rights and environmental standards by German businesses should have legal consequences. Companies should be liable for damages.

No advantage for irresponsible businesses!

Until now reckless practices have been financially rewarding for businesses. However, some businesses are already increasingly committed to respecting human rights and protecting the environment. These companies should no longer suffer a disadvantage against their irresponsible competitors. The Supply Chain Act Initiative wants all businesses to respect human rights and environmental standards.

Don't shift responsibility onto consumers!

Most people don't want to buy products made with child labour or which destroy rain forests. Consumers should no longer be offered a false choice – human rights and the protection of our natural resources are not negotiable. We need a legal framework binding all businesses to protect human life and the environment!

Everybody affected by human rights violations needs access to German courts!

Family members of victims, like in the case of KiK, often have to deal both with their loss and being left destitute. The Supply Chain Act Initiative wants those affected to be able to file a suit for compensation before German courts, if a business hasn't met its human rights obligations.

Not enough change from businesses on a voluntary basis!

In the textile, cocoa, or coal sectors, businesses join forces in voluntary alliances to improve production standards. Unfortunately, however, voluntary initiatives typically lack ambition. Often they only react to existing issues instead of tackling their causes. Only legal action can truly change business practices.

The solution? A supply chain act!

Other European countries have already passed equivalent laws, such as the ban on forced and child labour in supply chains. We need this in Germany, too. Businesses acting responsibly have nothing to fear from such legislation. It will only target those businesses that haven't done enough to prevent damage to people or the environment. This is a fair arrangement.

Therefore, the Initiative for a Supply Chain Act calls upon the German government to pass a law on human rights due diligence for businesses! To protect human rights and the environment.

Sign our petition to the German Chancellor now and join us in our call for a supply chain act!


Sign now

Since 2015, as part of our joint campaign "Mensch. Macht. Handel. Fair." ("Human.Makes.Trade.Fair.") with the Weltladen-Dachverband (umbrella organization of German worldshops), the Forum Fairer Handel has been calling for an act on human rights due diligence.

Contact Person

Foto Maja Volland
Maja Volland
Tel. 030 - 280 45 349